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Count Balerion

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    GRRM, languages, history, opera, Tolkien, parodies, being weird.

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  1. I think Daario's just an average sellsword? I don't recall anything particularly psycho about him. Drogo also doesn't seem particularly psycho, by Dothraki standards.
  2. Hmm, it doesn't seem to have loaded properly. Let's try again (and then let's get in that car!):
  3. A pity Chad Summerchild didn't write it.
  4. https://www.google.com/search?q=drogon+meme&client=firefox-b-1-d&tbm=isch&source=iu&ictx=1&fir=8KYwxLuyF99tDM%3A%2C-7Q0QEDJ5QBrPM%2C_&vet=1&usg=AI4_-kSkNL15d4g1VohbTQCHllkp6QkH6A&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiCkujo_a3iAhVJs1kKHQh2BAIQ9QEwBnoECAkQBA#imgrc=pIW1AHpmggXo5M:&vet=1 And: They misspelt "dracarys" and there's an annoying pop-up asking you to whitelist; but this is brilliant: https://knowyourmeme.com/photos/1494505-the-iron-throne-episode
  5. I was going to give the episode a 4, because the LAST episode (ep. 5) should have been a 4 or even a 3, and I gave it a 5. But I ended up with a 5 for this episode as well, because it wasn't as horrible as it could have been. A lot of time without any dialogue .. They're not always big on dialogue, are they? Oh, and why was there so much whispering? What is it about Hollywood and whispering, anyway? I'm not the first to notice that the Dothraki seem to multiply after each engagement. Are they the brooms in the Sorcerer's Apprentice, who split into two whenever they're cut in two? Emilia Clarke is good at imaginary languages. Apparently, she thought killing the people of KL was liberating them. Yes, I too thought of Stalin. She's back to breaking the wheel, and it looks like there isn't really anyone who wants to raise up the common people who isn't a loony mass murderer? Not perhaps the most inspiring message. Anyway, given that they asassinated Dany's character, killing her physically not only wasn't unexpected, but could be viewed as a mercy. And at least they let Jon the Kind of Useless do that. That was hardly unexpected, either. A kind of touching scene, though; the chemistry for those two has improved this season. (Last season I'm not sure I ever quite believed in it.) "Don't tell Sansa." Was that a shoutout to book readers, or a callback to season 1? I don't think that line was kept in season 1. Kind of a Shade of the Lamp thing with Tyrion: "Up to now she's always killed evil people or enemies." Well, yes. I'm not doing ep. 5, but yes. Which is why the groundwork for ep. 5 was not laid in the show. But anyway ... Also, did no one ask what Drogon would do if Dany was killed? Luckily he just burnt the IT and flew off. But what if he'd gone rogue. Jon must have been borrowing Arya's plot armour. Anyway, that dragon has a lot of soul. And then we kind of jump to the council. Some of these people we've never seen, others we haven't seen in several seasons, so some (re)introduction would have been useful. I was briefly worried when Sam started talking democracy; but was relieved when the lords laughed. Even D&D know that would be ludicrous for a country whose political development is actually not even mediaeval. (The Middle Ages had parliaments and councils; also they had a highly trained cadre of lawyers, something that doesn't seem to exist in Westeros. And trying to introduce democracy would have led only to dictatorship.) Elective monarchy is not unheard of at all in real history. However, it amounts to oligarchy. This is why it's a pity both Stannis and Dany failed and went nutters; they're the only ones who were much into raising common people (Stannis's Onion Knight.) One thing they could have done is come up with some kind of parliament. As for Bran ... dunno. I don't really have a better candidate. Gendry has royal lineage and was raised a commoner, so maybe a good choice. Jon is the legitimate heir, but has been locked away, and anyway was a bit of an idiot. So not sure Bran much worse than the other choices (though he was kind of useless). The "stories" thing sounded like it was groping for an interesting idea, but never quite got there. But why "Bran the Broken"? Why not "Bran the All-Knowing" or "Bran the Raven"? So Tyrion, having been so brilliantly succesful as Hand before, gets another go at it. GW seems to have gone quietly enough after murdering prisoners and wanting T and Jon dead. Where did the Dothraki go again? What's this about the Reach being empty? The AOTD never made it there, and the war last season (s. 7) seemed fairly easy. Arya and Jon's farewell seemed more touching than their reunion. This "west of Westeros" business has occasionally come up before, but not sure why she's set on never coming back? The White Book scene with Brienne was cool (another book "shoutout" I guess). Although Jaime was a complete cad to her. And I did wonder how on earth that book survived. I guess it's because Dany was so bent on punishing Cersei by burning everything *except* the RK. Oh, there I go again with ep. 5. And Sam's book was also cool. The joke about leaving out T a bit silly, perhaps. Wow, Bronn has done well for himself. Bronn fans must be going WOOHOO! (Not to dis anyone for being a fan.) Not perhaps terribly plausible. But really, apart from Dany and Jon fans, every fandom gets something. Well, Jon fans get Ghost, I guess because without the dragons there's abit of CGI budget left over. And that was cute. But his end, perhaps not the most satisfying. Sansa gets to be Queen in the North, and hey, why not. Unlike some other people, she actually did get some quasi-consistent portrayal as an effective administrator. At least in the sense of occasionally saying something about food or whatever. (It's more development than Mad Dany got.) So that's that.
  6. My score? I started with 8, but kept going down until I ended up with 5. So .... what did I like ... The visuals were like awesome and that fire looked so cool. Sorry, thinking about it makes me talk like that. And unlike ep. 3, I could see it! Yay? Several touching moments: Jaime and Tyrion's tender moment where T tells J that he was all he had during their childhood. Jaime and Cersei, everyone's favourite incest couple did have a touching final scene -- say what you will about Jaime's arc not amounting to much. (He should have left Brienne to Tormund.) The actors acted the blazes out of it. Sandor/Arya. Now I did want to tell the Hound "She already *has* ended up like you -- WORSE than you." But one just has to forget about the Freyssacre and Frey pies. The writers have. But the scene was very moving, and I like these two together. Arya with the smallfolk. Yes, one has to forget Psycho Arya. But it's good to get the view from the ground, and Arya has always been fond of the smallfolk. And the horse was cute, though how it survived Heaven knows. What else? The music was excellent, as always. Weirdly, I liked Qyburn. At least he's loyal. What was I mheh about? Cleganebowl. I expected it (who didn't), and it was maybe a tad underwhelming. But hey. What do I hate? Dany. Let me count the ways: 1. No real foreshadowing in the show, and precious little in the books. Yes, Varys was concerned about it last episode; but I can only assume that's because he (or his little birds) had filched a copy of the next episode's screenplay. She hadn't done anything nutters up to this episode. Also, where she *was* ruthless in the past, it was always against the powerful, slaveowners and the like. I can't recall any exceptions in the show (and only one exception in the books). Now, is GRRM going this route? If so, I would hope he at least prepares it better. Something of this *might* have been salvaged, if D had aimed first at the Red Keep and then had some collateral damage. The fact that she blitzes the civilian population for several minutes bfore remembering to hit the RK doesn't even make mad sense to me. 2. The message or meaning. It appears that both female claimants are psychopathic mass murderers. So the chap in the 16th century who condemned the Monstrous Regiment [Rule] of Women was perhaps right? (There's still Sansa, who hitherto has at worst been peulant and petty. Oh yeah, even she fed Ramsay to dogs.) Further, Cersei is actually the *less* psychopathic of the two. So it's the one who previously actually wanted to do something to *improve* things for the commons who ends up killing them. Luckily, we have a decent *man* to take over the throne now. It's true that he's been incompetent and ineffectual for most of the last few seasons; but at least he's not psychopathic. So clearly the least bad choice. (Is anyone left who isn't either evil or stupid?) Possible defences: "It's a twist!" Well, perhaps. Twists are not ipso facto good, though. "GRRM is dark and grim and probably has something similar." GRRM may plan something siilar, but I hope he handles it a bit better at least in terms of plausibility. Supposedly, though, he's going for "bittersweet", yes? This isn't bittersweet, as far as I'm concerned. "You're a Dany fan nyah nyah nyah." This whole flame thing between fans of different characters has always seemed a bit silly. I like Dany *and* Sansa *and* Stannis and even (certainly in the books) Jon. But there's always been a reason for being a Dany fan: she alone has freed the slaves. The new Dany would have burnt the slaves and left the Masters for last. *** Can this be salvaged? Dunno. It seems that Dany as a show-character has been irremediably ruined. It's possible that she could come to her senses (as suddenly as she lost them) next season, and try to be a good ruler (and by the end of last episode everyone forgets the mass burning as they've already forgotten the Freyssacre and the Sept). I'm not sure I'd call that salvaging. Or perhaps she comes to her senses and realises she's unfit to rule, and voluntarily gives up the throne to the nice if a little slow white chap, Jon. Or perhaps she dies in childbirth as some think, giving birth to a little pyromaniac baby. Or maybe Jon kills her tragically, and she's Nyssa Nyssa! Yay?
  7. I can't find it online; but somewhere there's a meme of Ghost riding a dragon and going all dracarys. There's also one with Bran killing the NK by warging a bunch of ravens w/ knives attached to their backs and stabbing him.
  8. Jon's funeral oration was actually decent. I think Kit Harrington's acting was a bit better than usual. A lot of chitchat, but I'm glad to get some actual dialogue! I like Dany's move here. First she frightens Gendry by remarking on their history, then shows herself magnanimous. Further, now anyone who denies her queenship is also dissing Gendry and is therefore a meanie. Deft. It's been pointed out she could have done a bit more of this. Supposedly she's going nutters next episode; but we haven't seen any of that this season so far, barring a weird face she makes on Drogon later on. (I did wonder: who's at SE now?) Also: maybe Gandry is an object lesson for Sansa? "See, I'm nice to those who acknowledge me." Who knows. I also like the Sansa-Hound bit, even if they have rather underplayed that relationship generally. I wondered that Arya wasn't more feted; she did just save humanity, yes? Speaking of Arya, I think she's a bit confused. Being a lady in the sense of the wife of a lord isn't necessarily the same as being a lady in the sense of needlework and courtesy armour and whatnot -- especially when the lord is Gendry who has been raised as a pleb. Decent scene w/ Jon/Dany. Dorne exists! And it's headed by Prince Random Chap. OK, the battle tactics/strategy bit. I don't get this sort of thing very well. But: Is Tyrion really the kind of chap whose advice on the subject you'd want to follow after last season. Anyway, you can surely beat Cersei without destroying KL. Also, I'd have let Sansa talk to the officers. Wouldn't the chief officers be at the meeting already? I thought I saw GW. Apparently a decent number of kamikaze Dothraki survived? Brienne-Jaime: I guess in Hollywood one hops into bed right away. Then Jaime drops her equally right away. Westeros is feeling very twenty-first-century-U.S.A. these days. Hound/Arya for a ride is kind of cute. Just, please: no Arya-Hound sex scenes! Does this mean Arya kills both NK *and* Cersei? Sweetrobin points out assassinating Cersei is a better plan than what the Top Brass came up with. Not going back to Winterfell: why not? And keeping up Sansa's antipathy to Dany does make for some tension, although one can't help noting that Dany did a good deal more in the war than did Sansa. The scene w/ Jon, Sam, and Gilly is nice, but .... What did you say, Sam? "Not much to do in the Citadel"? Well, besides instant cure of greyscale and discovering the truth about Rhaegar and Lyanna and ... Noot to be outdone in the incomprehensible department, Jon claims Ghost "belongs in the North". Dude. He belongs with *you*. And Jon is so offhanded about giving up Ghost, too. Weren't the direwolves kind of a big deal when they turned up *in the first episode*? Jeesh. Jon apparently has charisma and Dany doesn't. And all that Mhysa business a few seasons back? Maybe she only has charisma in Valyrian. Rhaegal's death is nasty. Why no "dracarys"? Burn that fleet, don't just make weird faces, khaleesi. It's dracarys time! Missandei's death was pretty nasty, too. That's pretty powerful stuff. I did raise an eyebrow at Tyrion telling Cersei she's not a monster. And the Sept? That's so two seasons ago. Final score: 6 or 7. I felt nice and went with 7.
  9. As expected, mostly Action/Batte stuff, with all the accoutrements: massing forces, gore (although I didn't notice so much of that); minimal dialogue, apart from yelling and screaming and grunting (I'm not sure there was more than a quarter-hour of dialogue in toto). There was a lot of chiaroscuro -- but more scuro than chiaro. Most of this stuff was good in its kind, if you like that sort of thing. Some high points of the battle: Flaming swords! Dragons! Dragons fighting! High Valyrian! Melisandre Lyanna Mormont takes out a wight-giant! (Even if he did look a little like the Abominable Snowman in RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER.) Some other things I liked: Dany mourning Jorah. (Also the fact that she fought in the battle.) Ghost! (Even if he didn't do much.) Theon's redemption, and Bran telling him that he's a good man. Pretty powerful stuff. (I did wonder, earlier: what were Bran's ravens doing?) The retort to Sansa's observation that the dragon queen was dividing loyalties: "Without the dragon queen, we wouldn't have that problem because we'd all be dead." Some things I didn't like: The dark was cool; but there was a bit too much of it. Hard to see what's going on. Too many survivors. This is one crowded cast of characters. A little too easy. Instead of the game of thrones being a distraction from the war against the WW, it's the other way around? What I really didn't like: How the NK went out. This is not a job for Arya IMO. There isn't space for me to go on about Arya's arc, if she has one (last season she went from psychopathy to paranoia). But it seems to me she's more suited to human antagonists. If you want her to kill someone important, let it be Cersei (maybe the valonqar gets her, although there's been no mention of him yet in the show) or Qyburn or Euron. The most appropriate way for the NK to go is: 1. A MAIN main character. Arya's pretty main, but not THAT main. Jon slaying the NK in single combat would be horribly predictable, but would at least make some sense, inasmuch as he's been built up as the Big Hero. Maybe some way could be found to make Jon doing it less obvious; dunno. There's also Dany. I'd have to concede that having the dragons just burn the NK to death would be too easy; but again, it would have been better than what we got. Or Dany could jump from her dragon onto the NK and stab him, the way Arya did but w/ perhaps more plausibility. 2. Frankly supernatural means. This has the advantage that you can be a little less obvious. Melisandre could beat him; although she's much less a main character than Arya, she does have supernatural abilities, and is all about defeating the Great Other. Yes, she burnt Shireen; but then Arya murdered the Freys. I incline to think Bran defeating the NK would have been best. The NK is about to win and wipe out the bedraggled remnant! Then suddenly, Bran ... well, I've always been fond of the notion that Bran IS the NK (it would have been cool as the blazes), so perhaps he goes back and undoes something to prevent this NK business). Or he wargs the NK and makes him commit suicide! (Although then, why didn't he do it earlier? Or he wargs Viserion, and Viserion kills the NK! Like wow! Also, this thing where they all die when the NK dies: too easy. Final score: Because the conclusion of a major plotline is so unsatisfactory, I have to give it a 5.
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